Tyler Duncan 


"En matière d’éloquence, de caractérisation et de vie, Tyler Duncan a été le héros parmi les solistes de la soirée. On soulignera l’adéquation parfaite entre les trois voix masculines, tout comme leur typicité de timbre très juste pour ce répertoire : Staples, légèrement nasillard, et Moody ont été excellents."

                                                                                                                                                                     -Le Devoir

at the Spoleto USA Festival:
"Early this week, I discovered the extraordinary Canadian baritone Tyler Duncan, who made his chamber music series debut with a rendition of Robert Schumann's masterpiece for solo voice and piano...Dichterliebe...Duncan has one of those perfect lieder voices: flexible, expressive, consistent in tone and pitch.  He also has the requisite dramatic flair and the intelligence to convey the meaning of the poetry by Heinrich Heine.  He did so, and more, on Sunday.  

Singing Dichterliebe requires physical and mental stamina.  It's not enough to express the essence of each song; the performer must find the narrative through-line, the emotional arc.  He must embody the heartbroken lover recalling, fondly at first, his blooming desire and amorous bliss, then progressing into the bitterness, anger and sorrow felt by someone spurned.

Duncan expertly conveyed all of this, singing from memory.  He had internalized each phrase and devised a convincing character for the stage who bemoaned in beautiful phrases his heartache.

Duncan seemed relaxed on stage and he sang with confidence, his lyrical voice clear, his diction crisp but not artificial.  It's not often one gets to hear this (or any) song cycle performed live, in its entirety, by such graceful and competent musicians.

On Wednesday, Duncan was back on stage at the Dock Street, this time to perform Beethoven's An die ferne Geliebte ("To the distant beloved"), accompanied on piano with panache by his wife Erika Switzer.

Duncan and Switzer performed this the first time when they were both students.  It was evident that they, too, take An die ferne Geliebte personally. Together, they traded the emotions expressed in the poetry; they shared the musical phrasing, knowing in advance what the other would do."
                                                                                                                                                                      -The Post and Courier 

"Carmina Burana is no modest undertaking, and for once the San Diego Symphony assembled all the right players on the field for the big game...Each of the cantata's vocal three soloists brought vibrant, fresh vocal allure and winning dramatic characterization to their roles...

Baritone Tyler Duncan easily won over the audience with his coy depiction of the young swain or the tipsy abbot, and he found for each role an appropriate color in his well-trained, resonant voice.  The top of his range sported a confident tenorial timbre, and he was able to slip in and out of his pleasing falsetto - a trick Orff indulged in with impunity - gracefully."
                                                                                                                                                                   -Ken Herman, SanDiegoStory.com

New York's Bard Music Festival:
"On August 8 came the program "The Song Cycle as Drama," featuring an excellent performance of Winterreise in the intimate, acoustically fine Olin Hall.  Baritone Tyler Duncan and his fellow Canadian, pianist Erika Switzer (piano) gave a musically straightforward and deeply affecting account, winning deserved audience tributes.  Duncan, who's scored in Baroque music, seems poised to continue the Lieder singing legacy of his countrymen Gerald Finley and Russell Braun, sharing their virtues of tonal beauty, interpretive restraint and dynamic mastery.  It's a manly, beautifully graded sound, capable of tenorish resonance and bass underpinnings.  His gestures and stances were forthright, never melodramatic, and his German excellent.  Switzer offered musically cogent, dynamically pliable and consistently responsive playing.  This Winterreise proved highly memorable."
                                                                                                                                                                                        -David Shengold, Opera News                                        

Minneapolis Recital Debut :
"On Tuesday evening, I caught a wonderful recital by Canadian baritone Tyler Duncan and collaborative pianist Erika Switzer. They performed sets of songs about childhood, travel, love and loss from the first half of the 20th century, the words coming mostly from Robert Louis Stevenson and Indian Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore, the music from Reynaldo Hahn, Darius Milhaud, Erich Korngold and Ralph Vaughan Williams.  Bringing the songs to lovely life were Duncan and Switzer, a team that achieved an admirable balance between piano and voice, urgency and reflection, power and playfulness.

There was no printed text in the program, but none was needed, for the lyrics were all in English and Duncan's articulation was immaculate.  He used his very expressive face to humorous effect when he released his inner child (be he exuberant, frightened or pouty) on Hahn's Five Little Songs and Milhaud's Child Poems.  On the latter, Switzer skillfully brought out the jazz-inflected harmonies that inspired Milhaud student Dave Brubeck.  

Korngold was known as a film composer, and Duncan made each of his Five Songs absorbingly cinematic, especially Wings, an arresting, grief-tinged carpe diem.  But the evening peaked with Vaughan Williams' Songs of Travel, a setting of nine poems by Stevenson with a plethora of sharp contrasts in mood.  Duncan and Switzer ably conveyed the valedictory feel of the final three songs, sadness at the memory of an irretrievable past giving way to consolation from the immortality of art."  
                                                                                                                                                                 -The Saint Paul Pioneer-Press 
Pacific Music Works' St. Matthew Passion:
"Tyler Duncan, an admirable Jesus last week, blossomed still further on Saturday in the St. John arias."  
                                                                                                                                                                               -The Seattle Times
Seattle Symphony debut:
"...there was so much to praise in the superb lineup of vocal soloists, the high quality of the players and the sense of drama throughout all the participating ensembles.  This was no static oratorio, but a deeply moving theater piece with beautiful, contrasting musical textures...the rest of the soloists also were impressive, particularly baritone Tyler Duncan (as Jesus)."  
                                                                                                                                                                                    -The Seattle Times   

Milwaukee Symphony debut, Hans Graf conducting Schubert's Mass No. 6:
"Soprano Joélle Harvey, mezzo-soprano Jennifer Rivera, tenors Marc Molomot and Sean Panikkar, and baritone Tyler Duncan sang the solo and small-ensemble sections of the Mass with musical color and meaning as well as a tremendous ensemble sense."
                                                                                                                                                                          -The Milwaukee Journal
Boston Early Music Festival performances of Handel's first opera, Almira:

"Tyler Duncan’s resonant baritone combined lyrical and dramatic qualities that were just right for the Moorish Raymondo..."   

"Tyler Duncan, baritone, brought regal bearing and commensurate noble tone to his role as Raymondo, a mysterious and early-on disguised King of Mauretania..."   
                                                                                                                                                               -The Boston Musical-Intelligencer
 New York Philharmonic debut, Masaaki Suzuki conducting:

"Tyler Duncan produced his refined baritone with care and artistry and dispatched yards of neat coloratura."
                                                                                                                                                                              -Opera News Online

Chautauqua Festival debut in the Brahms Requiem:

"...Duncan entered in passages high in his range with excellent diction and very impressive expression in Herr, lehre doch mich.  The exchanges between Duncan and the chorus seemed like conversation..."
                                                                                                                                                                         -The Chautauquan Daily

Calgary Philharmonic with Roberto Minczuk conducting Beethoven's Ninth Symphony:

"The final movement, however, was notably more in the heroic vein, considerably helped by an enthusiastic Calgary Philharmonic chorus and a first-rate quartet of soloists...Individually the members of the quartet sang impressively well..."
                                                                                                                                                                                -The Calgary Herald

Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte at the  American Spoleto Festival:

"First, a mention of Canadian baritone Tyler Duncan, who plays the Speaker/First Priest:  His wonderful voice is honey-coloured and warm, yet robust and commanding.  When he first came on stage, his back was to the audience, but his authoritative singing absolutely focused our attention."
                                                                                                                                                                               -The Globe and Mail

Brahms Requiem with Christopher Seaman and the Rochester Philharmonic:

"What left me wanting more were the few solo lines of baritone Tyler Duncan.  What a fantastic voice:  Natural talent, technical skill, and thorough training.  Duncan's program notes mention music degrees from Munich and Augsburg, and it showed.  His pronunciation and elocution of the German text was so well done, each word could be understood all the way to the balcony.  I can only hope that he will soon return to Rochester for a concert in which he is featured."
                                                                                                                                                                       -(Rochester) City Newspaper

"Guest baritone Tyler Duncan, making his RPO debut, dispatched his solos with dramatic urgency.  Given a little poetic license, you could describe his voice as an iron fist in a velvet glove:  great carrying power with a sensuous edge."
                                                                                                                                                            -(Rochester) Democrat and Chronicle

​Haydn's The Creation with the Evansville Philharmonic:

"The voices of Raphael and Adam were sung by baritone Tyler Duncan.  Mr. Duncan is an able and charismatic performer.  He sings with beautiful tonal clarity and brought great feeling and expression to the roles.  His interpretation of Now Shines Heaven in the Brightest Glory, in which Haydn's sense of humor comes out, was very funny as he sang about the creation of insects and worms and the bassoons imitated the sounds of beasts."

Messiah with Kent Tritle and Musica Sacra in Carnegie Hall:

"The baritone Tyler Duncan delivered the texts with a powerful voice and dramatic conviction, enunciating the words with appropriate bite.  The energetic applause after The  Trumpet Shall Sound was merited by both Mr. Duncan's passionate singing and the vibrant playing of the trumpeter Scott McIntosh."
                                                                                                                                                                              -The New York Times 

Spoleto Festival debut, as Tom Friendly in the ballad opera Flora or Hob in the Well:

"Chuchman and Duncan, both Canadians, gave delightful performances in terms of singing and acting.  Their voices are clarion bright, yet rich and burnished with color...Duncan's baritone is robust and compelling.  They both have glittering careers ahead."                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                                                                       -Opera Canada

Concert with Toronto’s Tafelmusik:

“Duncan is one of those rare lyric baritones with rich, full low notes—ideal for singing Bach’s music.  His showpiece was the sacred solo Cantata No. 82, Ich habe genug.  Duncan showed tremendous sensitivity to the music, while bringing out the wide emotional and dramatic range of the text .   His singing was equally winsome in two airs from other sacred Cantatas, O du angenehmes Paar is a slight, wistful-sounding piece with a particularly inventive accompaniment.  Lasset dem Höchsten is a boisterous song of thanks that made an ideal cap to a sehr gemütlich (very cozy – intimate, in a friendly sense) musical evening.”
                                                                                                                                                                                     -The Toronto Star

Demetrius in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Princeton Festival:

"As the young Athenians, especially Tyler Duncan (a robust-voiced Demetrius)  gave dramatically nuanced and vocally solid performances.” 
                                                                                                                                                                                 -The New York Times

Festival Vancouver concerts:

“…the trio was joined by baritone Tyler Duncan—a locally bred and very talented singer who is apparently a long-time veteran of MusicFest Vancouver—to perform a MusicFest-commissioned original set of eight songs about love, composed by Stephen Chatman…with his rich voice and stage presence, Duncan pulled them off with panache.”
                                                                                                                                                                                    -The Vancouver Sun

Bach’s St. John Passion at the Baldwin-Wallace Bach Festival:

“Baritone Tyler Duncan invested Jesus’ utterances with expressive nobility.”
                                                                                                                                                                       -The Cleveland Plain-Dealer

In recital:

"Duncan's Sleep, with its truncated phrases and long pauses, was delicious; and his full and leisurely baritone gave Winter a gravitas it would not otherwise have had, settling over the orchestra's active triple meter and weighing it down like a storm cloud."                                                                                                                                                                                            

                                                                                                                                                                                 -The New York Times

"In the very first song of Tyler Duncan’s recital at Weill Hall, something unusual happened; he found the emotional center and struck it with such poignancy that not a sound could be heard from anyone in the audience.  Mr. Duncan’s vocal technique is solid and secure, with a sound that has warmth and power in the middle to low register, and delicate refinement in the upper reaches.”
                                                                                                                                                                                      -The Toronto Star

"Live" performance of Shostakovich Michelangelo Songs at the Metropolitan

Museum of Art, February 11, 2018

Viewable on FACEBOOK



Matthew Sprizzo

Artists 2018-2019

Scroll down for audio, reviews, photos and program biography.

Video (link above):  Bass Arias from Bach's

St. Matthew Passion

Bacalov                                                                 Missa Tango

J.S. Bach                                                          

B Minor Mass, Magnificat, St. Matthew Passion, St. John Passion, Weihnachtsoratorium, Ich habe genug, many Cantatas

Barber                                                                  Dover Beach

Beethoven                                                         Symphony No. 9

Berg                                                                     Lulu (Journalist)

Berlioz                                                                  L’enfance du Christ

Bizet                                                                      Carmen (Morales)

Blow                                                                      Venus and Adonis (Adonis)

Brahms                                                                 Ein deutsches Requiem, Vier ernste Gesänge, Die schöne Magelone

Britten                                                                  A Midsummer Night's Dream (Demetrius), War Requiem, Cantata Misericordium

Debussy                                                               3 Ballades de François Villon

Donizetti                                                              La Cenerentola (Dandini)

Duruflé                                                                 Requiem


Dream of Gerontius

Fauré                                                                    Requiem, La bonne chanson,  L’horizon chimérique

Finzi                                                                     Let us Garlands Bring

Gounod                                                               St Cecelia Mass

Handel                                                                  Almira (Raymondo), Messiah, Judas Maccabaeus, Israel in Egypt, La Resurrezione

Harbison                                                              The Flight into Egypt

Haydn                                                                   Die Schöpfung, Die Jahreszeiten, Harmoniemesse, Lord Nelson Mass, Paukenmesse, Theresienmesse

Ibert                                                                      Don Quichotte

Janáček                                                                Glagolitic Mass

Mahler                                                                 Symphony No. 8, Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen, Rückert Lieder

Martin                                                                  Golgotha

Mendelssohn                                                    Elijah, Paulus

Monteverdi                                                        Vespers of 1610

Mozart                                                                 Le Nozze di Figaro (Count Almaviva), Die Zauberflöte (Papageno;
Der Sprecher), Requiem, Mass in C

Orff                                                                        Carmina Burana

Puccini                                                                  Madama Butterfly (Yamadori)

Purcell                                                                  King Arthur, The Fairy Queen

Poulenc                                                                Le bal masqué, Le travail du peintre

Ravel                                                                   Don Quichotte à Dulcinée, 5 Greek Songs

Rossini                                                                  Il barbiere di Siviglia (Fiorello), Petite Messe Solenelle

Ryan                                                                    Afghanistan: Requiem for Peace

Saint-Saëns                                                        Oratorio de Noël

Schubert                                                              Winterreise

Schumann                                                           Das Paradis und die Peri, Dichterliebe, Liederkreis, Op. 24

Vaughan-Williams                                            Five Mystical Songs, Sea Symphony

with recital partner, pianist Erika Switzer:


Tyler Duncan Repertoire List 

Poulenc's Le bal masqué:

"Veering from madcap brassy triumph to cafe-music suavity, the work here received a lively, agile performance from Mr. Duncan, his delivery light and natural, and a team of excellent players."

Tyler Duncan Biography

Tyler Duncan Photos

                                Photo Credit:   Tatiana Daubek


Link to Tyler Duncan's audio page


Cherry Tree Farm by Camille Saint-Saëns - with Erika Switzer, pianist

Dover Beach  by Samuel Barber - with The St. Lawrence String Quartet

In darkness let me dwell -by John Dowland - with Kevin Payne, lute

Tyler Duncan Press

Nigredo Hotel September 2018 at Vancouver City Opera:

"Both lead singers showed great fortitude and commitment in attacking the physical and psychological demands of their roles. Tyler Duncan possesses a naturally powerful and resonant baritone voice which, combined with his meticulous enunciation, served him well in the role of Raymond. Every word he sang was audible and intelligible, even while he was running across the stage, moving heavy objects, or stripping away one layer of clothing after another. I especially admired the way he brought to the fore his character’s extremes of mood – defiant, bewildered, frightened, pleading – and his emotional vulnerability."

                                                                                                                                                                                                 -Vancouver Classical Music

 "Duncan's portrayal of Raymond was fast-paced and intense, getting more unsettled into the final climax, and his vocal performance was stunning. The part of Raymond has a huge range, both vocally and emotionally, and Duncan met it with consummate skill. In a small theatre with an onstage orchestra, it can be difficult to be heard throughout, but every note and word was clear and precise, and the character was compelling and sympathetic." 


​In recital at the Collaborative Works Festival, September 2018:

"...the lyric baritone Tyler Duncan, whose burnished voice and unobtrusive way of pointing up word meanings through the music proved just about ideal for the early Vaughan Williams cycle Songs of Travel. “A masterpiece that gets lost in the shuffle” (as Phan aptly described the English composer’s seldom-heard settings of nine poems by Robert Louis Stevenson) brought the program to a satisfying close as presented by Duncan and pianist Erika Switzer.

Unlike so many baritones, Duncan never gets growly at full volume, while his sound remains warm, pliant and even in quality throughout a wide range. He identified completely with the restless vagabond of the Stevenson texts — indeed, through his charismatic storytelling we followed his journey with rapt absorption. “Bright is the ring of words / When the right man rings them,” reads the opening line of the cycle’s penultimate song, and Duncan was that right man. The Canadian singer is right up there with other greatly promising young artists CAIC has introduced to Chicago, including Kiera Duffy, Sarah Shafer, Nicole Heaston, Douglas Williams and Jesse Blumberg."


Shostakovich Michelangelo Songs with Leon Botstein and the Orchestra Now at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, February 2018

"Never in its three years of existence have the young musicians of The Orchestra Now sounded more vibrant, rarely has a vocal soloist been as convincing and expressive as the Canadian baritone Tyler Duncan...I was so stunned by hearing this live--with such an expressive baritone--that masterly was the only adjective.  What had been singer-less excerpts before now became dark and even overwhelming epic songs.   The orchestra was not against the singer, but never ever seemed to accompany him.  "Love", for instance, isn't romantic love, but the ebullient, airy  love of wind instruments merrily tootling against Mr. Duncan's more sober Russian verse...And Mr. Duncan essayed all the songs with a rich, expressive baritone.   Like his piano music, Shostakovich understood the vocal instrument so perfectly that Mr. Duncan needed no straining, no work outside of the usual gamut.  That, however, meant within the compass of the poems, he could exercise whatever feeling--tempestuous, tormented, graceful, mysterious, with hints of Renaissance modality--that were necessary."


Early Music Vancouver Messiah December 2017

"The baritone, UBC alumnus Tyler Duncan, combined a remarkable ease of projection with smoothness of tone.  Whether in the bombast of Why do the nations so furiously rage together or the hushed intensity of The people that walked in darkness, his voice carried effortlessly over the instrumental ensemble."


                                                                                                                                                                                              -Vancouver Classical Music

June 2017 return to the Oregon Bach Festival:

"Baritone Tyler Duncan sang beautifully and movingly, especially in his last two arias, which set the stage for the Passion’s conclusion."

                                                                                                                                                                                                   -The Register-Guard

"Tyler Duncan, who also played Pilate, used a brilliantly shaded voice in his final aria that matched the richness and depth inherent in Bach’s music and text “Mache dich mein Herze rein” (“Make my heart pure”)..."

                                                                                                                                                                                                   -Oregon Artswatch


"The crushing greatness of Bach’s two extant Passion settings, which invariably make multiple appearances in the weeks before Easter, has often discouraged latter-day composers from treading the same ground. One who dared was the Swiss master Frank Martin, whose oratorio “Golgotha”

had its première in 1949. The work has received several fine recordings, notably a version on Harmonia Mundi, but until this year it had had only one live performance in New York. At Trinity Wall Street recently, the New Amsterdam Singers, an amateur chorus under the direction of Clara Longstreth, presented an intrepid revival of “Golgotha,” with the baritone Tyler Duncan impeccable in the role of Jesus. Outwardly austere, seething with inner drama, this is the only modern Passion that breathes the same air as Bach’s, and its neglect defies comprehension."
                                                                                                                                                                                                  -The New Yorker

British-Columbia-born and America-based baritone TYLER DUNCAN enjoys international renown for bringing consummate musicianship, vocal beauty and interpretive insight to recital, concert and operatic literature.  His 2017-2018 season included recitals  in Houston, New York and Montreal, return engagements with the New York Philharmonic (four performances of Messiah​ under Andrew Manze), Les Violons du Roy/Bernard Labadie, the Toronto Symphony/Peter Oundjian, Toronto's Tafelmusik and the Calgary Philharmonic, and debuts with the Minnesota Orchestra/Helmuth Rilling, Hartford Symphony, National Philharmonic and two engagements with Ottawa's National Arts Centre Orchestra.   His current season includes Nic Gotham's Nigredo Hotel ​ for his debut at Vancouver City Opera and the world-premiere of Jonathan Berger's chamber opera Leonardo at New York's 92nd Street Y.

In opera, Mr. Duncan's roles at New York's Metropolitan Opera include Yamadori in Madama Butterfly and Fiorello in Rossini's Il Barbiere di Siviglia.  

At the American Spoleto Festival he sang Friendly in the 18th-century ballad opera Flora and the Speaker in Mozart's Die Zauberflöte.   He has sung Dandini in Rossini's La Cenerentola with Pacific Opera Victoria, Demetrius in Britten's A Midsummer Night's Dream at the Princeton Festival;  roles in Lully's Armide with Houston's Mercury Baroque;  Purcell's The Faerie Queen and King Arthur with Early Music Vancouver, and Papageno in Mozart's Die Zauberflöte for Greensboro Opera.   He also sang the Speaker at France’s Angers-Nantes Opéra,  Raimondo in the Boston Early Music Festival production of Händel’s Almira and recently made his Japanese debut  in Bizet's Carmen under Seiji Ozawa.

Mr. Duncan's previous concert engagements include Orff’s Carmina Burana with the San Diego and Québec Symphonies and Calgary Philharmonic; Mahler's Eighth Symphony with the Toronto and American Symphonies and Calgary Philharmonic; Mendelssohn's Christus, Bach's Magnificat and Poulenc’s Le bal masqué with the New York Philharmonic; Haydn's Die Schöpfung with the Montreal , Winnipeg and Québec Symphonies;  Beethoven's Ninth Symphony with Tafelmusik, the Calgary Philharmonic, Toronto and Seattle Symphonies and in Berlin, Frankfurt, Stuttgart and Munich with the Philharmonie der Nationen;  Händel's Messiah with Tafelmusik, the National, Montreal, Baltimore, Seattle, Newfoundland and Toronto Symphonies, Boston's Händel and Haydn Society, Portland Baroque Orchestra and San Francisco's Philharmonia Baroque; Brahms' Requiem with the Rochester Philharmonic and at the Chautauqua and Berkshire Choral Festivals; Janáček's Glagolitic Mass with the Toronto Symphony;  Bach's St. Matthew Passion with the Puerto Rico and Montreal Symphonies, Munich Bach Choir, Grand Philharmonic Choir and Dresdner Kreuzchor, Bach's Ich habe genug  with Tafelmusik, Symphony Nova Scotia and the Calgary Philharmonic;  the Mozart Requiem with the Montreal, Utah and Toronto Symphonies and Calgary Philharmonic; and Vaughan-Williams' Five Mystical Songs at Carnegie Hall with the Oratorio Society of New York.    He also recently made debuts with the the Milwaukee Symphony  under Hans Graf and Baroque Chamber Orchestra of Colorado.   With the Montreal Symphony he has performed Berlioz’s L’Enfance du Christ and recorded Ibert/Honegger’s  L’Aiglon.    Among the other conductors with whom he collaborates are Helmuth Rilling, Peter Oundjian, Masaaki Suzuki, Leon Botstein, Christopher Seaman, Kent Tritle, Matthew Halls, Nicholas McGegan and Roberto Minczuk.   He is regularly welcomed at the Bard, American Spoleto and Oregon Bach Festivals and has appeared at the Halle Händel Festival, Verbier, Lanaudière, Stratford and Montreal Bach Festivals.

Mr. Duncan's considerable gifts in the realm of art song have earned him prizes from the Wigmore Hall (London) and ARD (Munich) Competitions; Joy in Singing, Naumburg and New York Oratorio Society Competitions;  Prix International Pro Musicis and the Bernard Diamant Prize from the Canada Council for the Arts.   He holds music degrees from the University of British Columbia; Germany's Hochschule für Musik (Augsburg) and Hochschule für Musik und Theater (Munich).  He is a founding member on the faculty of the Vancouver International Song Institute.   Frequently accompanied by pianist Erika Switzer, he has given acclaimed recitals in New York, Boston, Paris and Montreal, as well as throughout Canada, Germany, Sweden, France and South Africa.    

Recordings include the title role of John Blow’s Venus and Adonis, Bach’s St. Matthew Passion with Portland Baroque, Purcell works and Carissimi’s Jepthe with Les Voix Baroque, and a DVD of Messiah with Kent Nagano and the Montreal Symphony.​